Note to Self : to-do lists and perfect timing

As I sit writing this it’s late. Not like crazy college kid like I used to be staying up until 2 figuring out how to right the world’s wrongs. No. Nowadays “late” looks like 11 when I have frittered away the time between my son going to sleep and now on a bit of writing, a bit of yoga, and a lot more screen time than I might deem wise for anyone else.

My brain is on loop. It’s one of the ways my anxiety rears up. A voice that is overly insistent asks me to look at my calendar again and again. “What are you missing? What are you not remembering? What other things can you pack into this next seven days so that it’s some sort of ‘better’?” 

It’s utter crap. But it’s the crap that, if I don’t recognize, can throw me into a tailspin. 

So, in trying to slow the tailspin this evening, I got out of the bed and went to find my “good camera”. It’s a major component in one section of my to-do list tomorrow and if I can find it maybe {please?} that voice will quiet enough for me to rest.

  {painting by the lovely  Erika Lee Sears }

 {painting by the lovely Erika Lee Sears}

11pm and I’m rifling through the attic and the half dozen boxes marked “studio” that I still haven’t made it through since moving in during June. I’m not exactly sure where it’s at and I haven’t touched it in over a year. “God. What if it’s not up here? What if it somehow got lost in the move? That thing was worth more than... well it’s a nice camera... I can’t just waltz out and buy another one. Paige! What did you do...” 

That voice. The one that orchestrates this overactive to-do liat: she a total bitch and sees the potential negative in things 100% if the time.

I’m in my bare feet, hoping that there aren’t still nails up there, lifting and rearranging stacks of old and mostly empty boxes while trying to push away that screeching nag of a voice. And suddenly there it is. The camera bag. And it’s heavy so it might even have the camera in it. Zipped open: camera and battery and extra lens and charger. I have hit the mental equivalent of a homerun against the voice that was doing its best to beat me. 

As I go to charge the battery, I glance down again at the “good camera” and think about the old whispers of that same voice who is now, thankfully, quiet. That voice threw a fit when I decided to not pursue photography {it’s a stable career choice for a creative!}. She also railed against me when I realized I wasn’t a fashion blogger {but you’ve covered fashion week!} or a food blogger {remember that one post where you got all those gorgeous shots at the farmers market?}.

That voice, this yelling voice who insists that she is right and should not be ignored was shut down tonight. I showed her that all the energy she put into shaming me was wrong. I wasn’t foolish to have put the camera away those times and I wasn’t foolish to have bought it in the first place. Tomorrow I learn how to photograph my art so I can have professional prints made. Tomorrow I get a step closer to becoming a “real” artist.

And tonight? Tonight, I’m learning how much I prefer the soft hum of my husband’s breathing and the whir of the fan to the mean voice who’s been my companion for much too long.